“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

I awaken this morning in gratitude, moved by a YouTube video created over this past Thanksgiving holiday by a close friend’s gifted and talented son. It celebrates in a special and touching way the long, close friendship my friend has with a buddy of many years, someone that has shared his walk through life in sunshine and rain. The video is called “Ray and Barry – They’re Old Friends” and is at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rXF8qyCDX8

As I reflect I am touched by each point of friendship I sense in my wonderful life. Each point where I reach out and a hand … a thought … a feeling is reflected back. Such points are not large in number but there is a deep richness among them, a depth that varies but is felt richly just the same.

I am a man that cherishes deep connection. However, my life has been a journey of loneliness. A man alone within this crowded planet we call home. My scripts caused me to protect myself, never allowing connections or relationships that might go deep and open me up to hurt. I learned early that deep connection, as was the connection with my father, as much as I crave and desire it, takes you to a place of intense pain should it end. Mine ended with my father around age 5. I experienced such pain early and decided within me that the price was too high so I controlled how deep friendships went and firmly established a way of living that promoted aloneness.

As I discovered my feelings in recent years I’ve begun to open myself again to the richness of friendships. Old ways change slowly and new ways of being are still being learned, but I “feel” and see it differently now. This new way of seeing helps me break old ways … old patterns. I learn new steps to this dance of friendship, and the fresh music makes me want to practice more. Moments like this morning feed the fire for change, and with renewed thoughts and feelings about connection I will move forward into today. It seems to be what I need … what can add to nurturing my joy.

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